Here at HappyFox, we were proud to roll out our newest software, HappyFox Chat in March 2015. Six months later, we wanted to share how our story is progressing, from where we started back in the Spring.
From zero to 1,000 in two weeks? It happened. Honest!
HappyFox Chat was first introduced to members of the startup community at the Launch Festival, where our representatives were given the opportunity to show what we had of the product. We felt that it was not quite ready for release at the festival, so we shared what was available in the demo pit. Not only did we get to speak with other members of the startup community, but we also got face-to-face feedback from test users.
A great example of the priceless feedback we received comes from when our team gave a sneak peek of HappyFox Chat’s Shopify integration feature to the @Shopify team. Not only were they excited about what the software could do, but they provided feedback that proved to be invaluable to us.
“The team from Shopify suggested we add a feature, the Shopping cart tracker integration,” said Shalin Jain, our CEO. “We took their suggestion and went back to our development team. This feature was implemented the very next day, proving how HappyFox Chat is geared to constant improvement by taking actual user feedback and integrating it to our system.”
The most frequently heard comment about HappyFox Chat was “Wow!”, with one person who saw the system saying “This is like the Tesla of live chats.” (We’re based in Irvine, California – the home of the Tesla Corporation – if there’s one thing we know, it’s how cool a Tesla is!)
HappyFox Chat – Kind of a big deal.
In the aftermath of the Launch Festival, with an aggressive marketing approach, HappyFox Chat reached our initial goal of 1K initial signups in two weeks! Everyone at HappyFox could not have been more proud that this software was so well received right out of the gate.
With the success of our initial push, we took the next steps of getting traction in the marketplace, finding users who would take HappyFox Chat (in Beta mode) out for a spin and use their feedback to make a truly unique and powerful live chat product.
After we learned that a majority of small or start-up businesses will in fact use a product like HappyFox Chat, it was time to get our product onto ProductHunt in order to really push the software to the next level.
Getting started on ProductHunt, and how it helped us grow.
For those unfamiliar with ProductHunt, it’s a site that specializes in showcasing the best new products in the tech space. It is a place for other startups, potential investors, and especially early adopters of new software and technologies.
The Product Hunter, or sponsor, who brought HappyFox to ProductHunt’s attention is Kevin William David, @kwdinc, who is the co-founder of WalletKit and the builder behind TagsDock. When Kevin was shown the software before it went up on ProductHunt he said “I can’t wait to start using this.”
Thanks Kevin! We were unaware that you have such epic super-powers.
Before we launched, our entire team spent a lot of time on MakerSuccess, reading all about the good, the bad and the ugly of launching on ProductHunt. We wanted to be as prepared as possible, putting the tools available to us as well as our own knowledge and experience from our 1K Beta Signups in two weeks goal.
Our team spent a week, where a majority of our developers did not sleep more than 1-2 hours a night, getting the product optimized for this launch, testing servers, and set up the website. We were ready to go, and then once the protocols of ProductHunt had been completed, it was HappyFox Chat’s turn to shine.
When HappyFox Chat was launched on ProductHunt, the response was beyond anyone’s expectations.
“We hoped we would cross about 100 votes, we never expected to get to where we did [with 463 votes and counting]. People actually started using the app within the first 5-10 minutes after they downloaded it,” according to Shalin.
Within the first two days that HappyFox Chat was on ProductHunt, we received 500 brand new signups. 500, no lie! Currently we are holding strong with 463 upvotes, making us the No. 1 live chat solution available to any Product Hunters!
HappyFox Chat – About to change the Live chat world.
With the help of both the Launch Festival and Product Hunt, the team at HappyFox Chat were able to achieve some crucial milestones, not just as simple as getting 1K Beta signups.
“We learned three really crucial things from both the Launch Festival and Product Hunt,” said Shalin. “First, we were able to build a better road map for the software, which we could not have done without the demo pit at Launch Festival. Second, we were given a much better understanding of our audience and who we were writing this software for. Finally, we discovered the awesomeness of the startup industry.”
It was the willingness to provide meaningful feedback, constructive criticism, advice and encouragement from our compatriots in the startup industry that is one of the most meaningful takeaways for the entire HappyFox team.
A tool like ProductHunt is something that a majority of product and project managers in the tech world should be looking at and utilizing. It is an incredible asset to anyone looking to successfully launch their software and improve it at the same time.
How to do a kick-ass product launch? Key take aways.
- Prepare well in advance. Go through similar submissions on ProductHunt and get an idea of what you need to achieve.
- Start engaging with the community well in advance. Don’t just show up one day and post your app. (Wait, wasn’t that obvious?)
- Create a list of top hunters on ProductHunt and check out the kind of stuff they’ve submitted. See if they are interested in similar app as your’s.
- Contact some influential folks on ProductHunt and demo the product to them. See what they think. Gather their feedback.
- Create value by offering something unique for the community. (An offer too good to resist!)
- Go through comments on similar app submissions and see what people are asking. Be prepared for those questions.
- Soon after your app is submitted, do an AMA sort-of in the threads. Possibly with a picture of your team. Adds authenticity and personality to the post.
- Go over early feedback like a hawk and respond to them asap. Promptness is key.
- Do not beg for votes. They’re not going to help.
- See the platform more as a feedback forum and encourage questions and criticism. This community can give you the best feedback.
- Plan in advance the right time to submit. No thumb rules here, but figure out what works for you.
- Make sure your servers can handle the sudden rush of traffic.
- Make sure you take questions on the site, with a live chat tool like HappyFox! (We got about 500+ chat requests that day alone. Phew! But great learning.)
- Patience. Don’t expect all the votes and comments to show up in the first hour. ProductHunt is a vibrant community with lot of activity. It builds up slowly and picks up pace while lingering there for a while (actually days together, thanks to their email newsletters).
Oh! And giving back something would be nice. We sent them a bunch of our awesome “Available To Chat” T-shirts, as a little token of love. Looks like they liked it. 🙂
— Product Hunt (@ProductHunt) August 13, 2015
Hope that was useful!